Bowling Green (8-13, 1-8 MAC) averages 73 points per game, but the Flashes’ (12-8, 5-4 MAC) defense was able to hold the Falcons to just 28 points in the first half and 19 points in the second.
“I thought we had a good first half defensively, holding them to 28 points,” coach Todd Starkey said. “That’s a team that’s pretty prolific in scoring the basketball and I thought we did a good job.”
The Flashes committed 12 of 18 turnovers in the first half and the team found themselves down by one heading into halftime.
“We had 12 turnovers in the first half and the other thing we really focused on at halftime was that we can’t have empty possessions like that against anybody,” Starkey said. “The guards did a really good job in the second half of cleaning that up and we didn’t have empty possessions.”
Kent State came out of the locker room going on a quick 8-0 run to start the third quarter and held Bowling Green to just four points in the quarter.
“We really focused on coming out with energy at the beginning of the third quarter,” Starkey said. “Our defensive intensity was phenomenal.”
Sophomore guard Mariah Modkins had a great defensive game. She held Bowling Green’s junior guard Madisen Parker to just one three-point attempt. Parker is fourth in Division 1 NCAA from 3-point range.
“Mariah Modkins had one of her best defensive games since she’s been here,” Starkey said. “She held Madisen Parker to one three attempt on the game and I thought she did a great job.”
Sophomore guard Asiah Dingle came off the bench and continued the defensive effort on Parker. Dingle scored 16 points on 7 of 9 shots in her return from a two-game suspension.
“I just thought we played very good defense,” Dingle said. “That was the number one thing we talked about in the locker room because it helps us win.”
Sophomore forward Lindsey Thall scored a game-high 19 points and went 3 of 6 on 3-point attempts.
“I feel like my time comes and goes,” Thall said. “We have a lot of really good scorers on our team, so one game it’ll be Katie [Shumate], one game it’s Nila [Blackford], one game it’s Asiah [Dingle] or Megan [Carter], but honestly tonight it was just my game.”
Thall had a stellar defensive game being matched up against Bowling Green’s junior center Angela Perry. Thall blocked a game-high four shots in the contest.
“One of the things that we talked about with Lindsey was that we knew she was going to have to battle all game,” Starkey said. “I thought she did a really great job of limiting [Angela Perry’s] touches. She only got 11 and made four of them which is great.”
Kent State will be back in action at 1 p.m. on Saturday against Ohio University (14-7, 7-3 MAC) in Athens.
Kathryn Rajnicek is a reporter. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.